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05 July 2009

Post 4th of July #2

We have been living in Big Bear for 2-1/2 years now.

For the past 2 years 4th of July was the hottest day of the year, 91 F in 2007, 90 F in 2008. This year the high so far has been 80.9 F on 28 June. Yesterday's high was 78 F & last night the low was 40 F. I'm almost afraid to guess what to expect.

Most of Southern California has its hottest weather in August & September. Not BB. That we've experienced so far, anyway. Last year there were a couple of nights in July that didn't cool down much, & a couple of times i ran a fan at night. Our bedrooms are upstairs where it does get warmer than downstairs. But even so, the two Augusts we have been here have begun to have a chill in the evening reminiscent of fall. We have a very short growing season here.

But i'm wondering about the rest of our summer. Will we actually have a couple of hot days, or will this summer just slide by? Pleasantly, i might add. I love days that stay in the 70s. :)

Duane's parents did some remodeling not long ago. They replaced many of their windows & we got the old ones. It has been our plan to build a greenhouse with those windows to extend our short growing season. Duane & i were outside today, measuring & planning. Don't know how this will all work out.

We didn't attend our regular church today (Shepherd in the Pines/SITP) but instead visited the ELCA church here. I've been wanting to do that for some time now. Our pastor has indicated that he doesn't believe this church serves the Lord & has made several statements i didn't quite believe. I wasn't going to interrogate anyone, & we didn't tell anyone we were from SITP. I was just curious.

This church came about soon after our current pastor came. The church split over differences, tho i don't know the whole story. After having attended SITP for some time i can entirely understand how this could come about. This (ELCA) church meets in the building owned by the Seventh Day Adventists. I have to say that this church building has a spectacular view of Sugarloaf mountain. It is stunning.

The folks there were very friendly & welcoming. The folks at our church are too, so i'm not praising one or the other. However, very quickly i was uncomfortable, & i don't know exactly what it was.

In conversation with Duane later, he was very critical of their service (it was a "4th of July - let's honor our country" service) & he saw it as a "social club."

I don't see that so very much, it wasn't my perspective. I don't really appreciate these particular services all that much & prefer for the homily to stick to the scripture read. But the pastor said several things that indicate that his opinions are more closely aligned with mine than are those of our pastor at SITP. And yet, i was uncomfortable.

I wish SITP was more ecumenical. We don't align with other churches at all. We don't pray for other churches at all (except a veiled indication they should "repent"). We do not do any joint anything. It bothers me. And our church has the barely disguised opinion that we are "right" everyone else is "wrong" & they need to change their minds. I did, in the past, ask one of our members whom i respect the difference between SITP & the ELCA church, & her response was "They don't love Jesus & try to follow the word of God."

Our pastor has said that to have any joint activity with another church indicates that we approve of them & their doctrine/theology. And as long as they are "wrong," well, of course we can't do that!

I can't help but wonder if God is not hurting at seeing this infighting among his children. Some of the things being fought over are not worth fighting over. There are many differences of opinions on theology & interpretation. As long as a church holds to the basics, essentially those outlined in the creeds, i believe that other differences are not of vast importance. So i loved it today when this church prayed for another - a Methodist church - that had just gotten a new pastor. Today was his first day & they prayed for this new pastor & the congregation. Lovely.

It may very well be that my discomfort with this church came from something in the bulletin that indicates this church is considering building a church together with the Episcopal Church in BB. What that would involve i do not know. But i do know that i'm very uncomfortable with the Episcopal Church in BB. I have visited it & am of the opinion that they are not concerned with honoring the word of God any longer.

Anyway, the result of today's visit is that i'm more comfortable/content with our church. It helped me to appreciate it more. Yes, i disagree with our pastor often & his opinions are often contrary to mine. But he does listen when i speak to him about concerns & he truly has the desire to serve our Lord Jesus. And, it occurs to me that to sit & listen to someone's opinions that are very close to my own (as the pastor today seemed to do) may not stretch & grow me. Our pastor challenges me to reflect & examine what i believe. Sometimes he challenges me more than i want. But the Bible does say that such things "sharpen" us.

Oh, Duane was surprised that i was eating the cho. chip cookies. He thought they were ones i'd bought at the store in the refridgerator case - he thought they were made with regular flour. That is a triumph!!! :)

1 comment:

Stacey said...

I can't believe your temperatures! Of course, it is not unusual to have heat in Texas, but we had one of the hottest Junes I can remember. The thermometer has already been over 100 several times, and with very little rain, our grass is already dying in some spots. It's too hot!

Thank you for the very kind comment you left on my blog today. I appreciated it very much and could identify with what you wrote.
Thanks so much for your prayers.